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APRIL 2019 WRESTLING DISCUSSION

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It's really starting to feel like WWE is super fucked. Morale sounds like it's at an all time low for whatever department you're in. They can't stop viewers from tuning out because, let's be honest, these shows mostly suck. Sure, there's maybe a segment or two that's good, but if you're watching anything else and see a couple good scenes in an otherwise terrible tv show the entire thing still feels like shit. I mean, we give a lot of credit to SDL being good, but it's it really? I think many of us are so addicted to this shit that any glimmer of hope makes us see the entire episode differently than most anyone else does. We see one good match and a good segment or two over there course of two or even THREE hours and we're ready to declare, "this was a good episode." I'm guilty of doing this too. In reality, what we watched was sill mostly terrible.

As a viewer, I'm sick of having my intelligence and dedication insulted. These stories are probably the most creatively bankrupt shit since the end of WCW. Both companies now feel very similar. Both had no idea what to do to right the ship, we got these weird shooty segments, things that were working incredibly well are abandoned quickly (Becky going back to smilin' Becky again being one example), we get maybe a good match or two each week, each company started doing one focus group or survey after another, but ultimately none of this matters because there's no solid direction.

How guaranteed is this Fox money? Or the USA money? USA surely isn't immune from being bought out and that network seems more in the dumps now than they have been in a long time. Their push for having multiple original series is nearly dead. I mean, they have Suits and, what, Queen of the whatever that show was called? Chrisly?! They went from a point where they didn't need WWE to where they now need them. They now need a show that is losing viewers like a sieve. That's fucking dire.

Some of you can say this is alarmist, but we've all seen this before. We know where this is headed. WWE is close to a point where TNA used to be at and we made fun of TNA endlessly for how little people tuned in. I don't even think we're close to seeing the floor for viewership.

And out of all of this, there were two things so insulting from that call. One was putting the blame on injured wrestlers. Well, if Vince is such a fucking genius then why can't he work around that? And two is Barrios or Vince dangling a fucking carrot that the next quarter will be better because that will account for more of that sweet, sweet blood money, even if they refuse to own up to that and flat out say they're not going to talk about that.

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WWE losing a boatload of money actually made the business section in our local paper. They mentioned the John Oliver thing maybe having something to do with it...

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6 minutes ago, Curt McGirt said:

WWE losing a boatload of money actually made the business section in our local paper. They mentioned the John Oliver thing maybe having something to do with it...

As much as I liked the Oliver piece that shouldn't be the reason for the drop, if it was it would have happened when it came out.  But it looks like investors saw through some of the bullshit that was said.  I'm honestly hoping it dips lower because it seems stuff like that (and losing out on future blood money) are the only things they care about these days.

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It's kind of always been Vince's thing to grab that international money when things go to shit here. Think about the crazy never-ending European tours of the mid 90s (cue the Maxx Payne bus footage). My guess is that they feel that the Saudi thing is a necessary evil in case the bottom ever does truly fall out of TV rights- a preemptive strike, if you will. 

The difference is none of those European countries did 9/11 and killed journalists and all that other messed up, draconian bullshit-- but in terms of just pure business, it's probably one of the oldest formations in Vince's playbook.

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1 hour ago, Zakk_Sabbath said:

But really, I have no clue whether Wall Street buys that crap. I'd like to think most people would be savvier than that, but then again, my lack of knowledge there is why someone else handles my investments

Wall Street investors aren't even savvy enough to know that wrestling storylines are fake. Witness the stock price drops when they killed off Vince and when Donald Trump took over Raw.

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The thing with all the reports aren't saying (or people are willfully ignoring) is that come the end of the year - the 4th quarter (and year as a whole) is going to be in the black because the FOX money will hit.

(It will actually probably be in the black in Quarter 3 too since most likely that is when Blood Money III will hit)

That part isn't just Vince/Barrios bullshit spin - it is the truth. (And all companies do that spin so don't start with the WWE IS LYING TO US! I CAN'T BELIEVE IT)

So if you are just looking at the stock - it is going to go back up later this summer to at least the level it was at before the announcement (Just over $100 a share)

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Eventually, when the live TV bubble pops, WWE is going to be in a real world of hurt. Having a strong WWEN subscriber base will mitigate some of that, but I honestly think that at the ends of these upcoming TV deals with NBC/USA and Fox, they will long for the halcyon days of 2018 when they could drive these great deals for themselves just because the networks were so desperate for live programming. 

You can still be profitable with a niche audience, and wrestling is more niche than ever now that WWE has driven out all the Southern rasslin' fans and actually pretty much everyone else except for millennials and Gen-Xers with kids and nerdy younger millennials and Gen-Z'ers. Audiences are so fragmented as a natural result of the sheer amount of options available out there for entertainment, so when I was last watching the company, I thought that what it was doing with NXT was smart because it clearly was a show meant for part of the fragmentary audience that maybe wasn't otherwise interested in spending time or money on the company, but my assessment is that not only have they not really capitalized on this, but that they've doubled down on their ideas about having homogeneous shows, production, etc., that end up ultimately alienating quite a few customers who might be willing to otherwise pay for pro wrestling. 


On a slightly tangential note, I also thought that the company miiiiiiiight get why a character like Bayley in NXT or people like face Daniel Bryan or face The New Day would get over and stay over in those arenas, but maybe they're not quite there yet? Half of the wrestlers out there get over because they are an exemplification of a power fantasy (your Magnum TAs, your Stone Colds), but the other half get over because they are relatable, and in fact, I think that younger audiences prefer the relatable wrestler to the power fantasy wrestler, but the company is built on Hogan, Austin, Rock and is having a hard time adjusting to the change in their  audience. 

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6 hours ago, Craig H said:

Seeing all those names and then...Jinder fucking Mahal...leaves such a bad taste in my mouth.

Jinder, Miz and even Kofi. The original WWE title is starting to feel like the European title. The world title in general has been feeling like a mid card belt since Sheamus beat Cena.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Craig H said:

How guaranteed is this Fox money? Or the USA money? USA surely isn't immune from being bought out and that network seems more in the dumps now than they have been in a long time. Their push for having multiple original series is nearly dead. I mean, they have Suits and, what, Queen of the whatever that show was called? Chrisly?! They went from a point where they didn't need WWE to where they now need them. They now need a show that is losing viewers like a sieve. That's fucking dire. 

I think the money has guarantees but the channel does not.  USA is always desperate, so they'll keep WWE on despite the ratings.  But I can absolutely see Fox dropping WWE to FS1 with the quickness as soon as there's a prolonged downward trend.

48 minutes ago, Zakk_Sabbath said:

It's kind of always been Vince's thing to grab that international money when things go to shit here. Think about the crazy never-ending European tours of the mid 90s (cue the Maxx Payne bus footage). My guess is that they feel that the Saudi thing is a necessary evil in case the bottom ever does truly fall out of TV rights- a preemptive strike, if you will. 

The difference is none of those European countries did 9/11 and killed journalists and all that other messed up, draconian bullshit-- but in terms of just pure business, it's probably one of the oldest formations in Vince's playbook.

Wait, what?   Vince's political party told me that Afghanistan and Iraq did 9/11.

44 minutes ago, tbarrie said:

Wall Street investors aren't even savvy enough to know that wrestling storylines are fake. Witness the stock price drops when they killed off Vince and when Donald Trump took over Raw.

Your daily reminder that our sitting president is a the guy Wall Street didn't even trust to run a pro wrestling company.

27 minutes ago, Smelly McUgly said:

You can still be profitable with a niche audience, and wrestling is more niche than ever now that WWE has driven out all the Southern rasslin' fans and actually pretty much everyone else except for millennials and Gen-Xers with kids and nerdy younger millennials and Gen-Z'ers. Audiences are so fragmented as a natural result of the sheer amount of options available out there for entertainment, so when I was last watching the company, I thought that what it was doing with NXT was smart because it clearly was a show meant for part of the fragmentary audience that maybe wasn't otherwise interested in spending time or money on the company, but my assessment is that not only have they not really capitalized on this, but that they've doubled down on their ideas about having homogeneous shows, production, etc., that end up ultimately alienating quite a few customers who might be willing to otherwise pay for pro wrestling. 

 

This is what confuses the shit out of me.  Pretty much all entertainment is fragmented and aimed at a niche audience nowadays.  Meanwhile WWE is doing its damnedest to target a mainstream that really doesn't exist anymore while alienating their fans. 

Edited by Technico Support
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Read Second Nature. Great book, though if your patience with the Flairs have run thin your mmv. Really honest and brave book. 

Now reading the Pillman book. 

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1 hour ago, RIPPA said:

The thing with all the reports aren't saying (or people are willfully ignoring) is that come the end of the year - the 4th quarter (and year as a whole) is going to be in the black because the FOX money will hit.

(It will actually probably be in the black in Quarter 3 too since most likely that is when Blood Money III will hit)

That part isn't just Vince/Barrios bullshit spin - it is the truth. (And all companies do that spin so don't start with the WWE IS LYING TO US! I CAN'T BELIEVE IT)

So if you are just looking at the stock - it is going to go back up later this summer to at least the level it was at before the announcement (Just over $100 a share)

Not sure about that. Assuming an efficient market, those future inflows are already priced into the current value of the stock, right?

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Spoiler

 

 

Um ... ow. 

ADMIN EDIT: spoiler for graphic injury. Let's not be those people...

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Posted (edited)
5 minutes ago, For Great Justice said:

Not sure about that. Assuming an efficient market, those future inflows are already priced into the current value of the stock, right?

umuNyld.gif 

I'd rather beat myself to death with a theory heavy textbook than play this game. 

Edited by West Newbury Bad Boy
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1 hour ago, RIPPA said:

So if you are just looking at the stock - it is going to go back up later this summer to at least the level it was at before the announcement (Just over $100 a share)

I'm a stockholder. Just the other day, it hit it's year-long high, then the next day or so it went down by about 15%. Although I'm not too concerned, I'm not a fan of these fluctuations.

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Maybe spoiler the broken leg pic for those, like me, with a weak constitution. 🤢

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I hope the company takes care of the independent contractor with the broken leg. 

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WWE does cover any in-ring injuries for wrestlers, I assume that also applies to refs too.

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14 minutes ago, The Green Meanie said:

I'm a stockholder. Just the other day, it hit it's year-long high, then the next day or so it went down by about 15%. Although I'm not too concerned, I'm not a fan of these fluctuations.

Technically it is already "rebounding" as it hit $82 around lunch time but closed at like $83.5

Assuming nothing bad happens (ha ha ha) this weekend - it probably hang around there for a bit. Think most folks will take that for now (as opposed to when it was less than $10)

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One thing from the investors call that I am interested in is that they said the next version of the Network will roll out sometime this year

Now this is the one due to having the new streaming partners

They were soliciting feedback on features people wanted to include (it seemed like the ability to create playlists was most popular)

They gave no indication that this would also be the rollout of the "tier" model but ya never know

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1 hour ago, RIPPA said:

 

They were soliciting feedback on features people wanted to include (it seemed like the ability to create playlists was most popular)

 

I would love if they introduce a playlist function that lets me pick matches/segments from shows instead of just adding a whole show. 

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I already got bushwacked by the beginning of There Will Be Blood showing me broken legs on TV today. No way I'm clicking that box (and I feel sorry for those of you with certain cellphones)

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5 hours ago, Hagan said:

Read Second Nature. Great book, though if your patience with the Flairs have run thin your mmv. Really honest and brave book. 

Now reading the Pillman book. 

I'll pass on the Flair book because my patience with them has run thin.

The Pillman book is great. I'd put it only behind Pure Dynamite as my favorite wrestling book. If knew Brian, Jr. was going to be at Pancakes and Piledrivers, I would have brought my copy of Crazy Like a Fox for him to sign.

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The worst problem with a lot of these things is that WWE may have bad shows and make fans angry, but ultimately at the same time, WWE has cracked a cheat code in the modern-day TV viewing.

WWE's big value for Fox and USA isn't just "they made them believe they're live sports", but more specifically, WWE is the only live sporting event that people will still watch on DVR after the fact. Any other sports event- you don't watch it live, you pretty much are going to be spoiled for the result- but with WWE, their +3, +5, and +7 are still really good from "okay, now I can watch them" viewers.

Even with bad shows, the Nielsen social media ranking cracked the code for WWE, because the social media ratings don't care if you like or hate something, just you TALK about it...and wrestling fans will keep talking about WWE. Even if they hate it, even if they stopped watching, people will still talk about it- and the ratings do better.

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9 hours ago, The Green Meanie said:

I'm a stockholder. Just the other day, it hit it's year-long high, then the next day or so it went down by about 15%. Although I'm not too concerned, I'm not a fan of these fluctuations.

Do you get money from owning the stock, or do you only get money if you sell? I obviously don't know anything about stocks. I looked it it briefly last year and seemed like legalized gambling.

 

15 minutes ago, SorceressKnight said:

Even with bad shows, the Nielsen social media ranking cracked the code for WWE, because the social media ratings don't care if you like or hate something, just you TALK about it...and wrestling fans will keep talking about WWE. Even if they hate it, even if they stopped watching, people will still talk about it- and the ratings do better.

How does that translate to money beyond scamming the networks? Also WWE seems pretty worried right now?

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